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Should staff have guns in schools? State Rep. proposes legislation involving lockboxes

Rep. Carra's proposal would allow self-defense lockboxes at K-12 schools, colleges and other educational institutions, both public and private.
Credit: Thinkstock
House Resolution No. 219 calls on Michigan to be declared a Second Amendment sanctuary state.

MICHIGAN, USA — A Michigan State Representative is drafting legislation to allow schools to maintain lockboxes for school staff to secure their personal weapons in case of an attack.

13 ON YOUR SIDE reporter Keely Lovern spoke to him one-on-one about the proposal.

Representative Steve Carra, a Republican who represents District 59, is sparking the conversation about arming teachers and other school leaders.

"This is not a one-size-fits-all approach," said Rep. Carra.

He said his plan would allow faculty and staff to store lawfully owned firearms or tasers in a secure lockbox at the school for the purpose of protecting students and others from imminent and malicious harm.

"School and state authorities must be fully prepared if, God forbid, another violent attacker targets students at school," said Carra, of Three Rivers. 

"Teachers and staff care for their students' safety, and some of these professionals are willing to use their gun or taser if a tragic need for school defense arises. I am putting together a plan to enable educators to protect their students with lawful weapons, stored securely for an emergency we pray never comes again."

Carra's proposal would allow self-defense lockboxes at K-12 schools, colleges and other educational institutions, both public and private.

"And of course if the teacher doesn't want to participate and doesn't feel comfortable, they don't have to," said Rep. Carra, "this is not a mandate."

"In general, we certainly want to have each of the schools decide what is best for them in their security of protecting the students at their school," he added.

According to the Associated Press, Democrats are vowing to push new gun-control legislation and to revive stalled bills in Michigan's Republican-led Legislature following the mass shooting at Oxford High School. 

But GOP leaders, who have opposed such measures, aren't committing to policy changes.

Sen. Rosemary Bayer, whose district includes Oxford High School, is the sponsor of three gun safety measures in the Michigan Legislature. She also previously introduced legislation aimed at holding accountable adults who don't secure firearms. The 15-year-old charged in Tuesday's slayings used a handgun that his father bought. That bill would require adults to keep their firearm locked up if they know it is accessible to minors.

On Wednesday, Sen. Bayer stood on the Senate floor and emotionally spoke about the shooting.

"We are all mourning," she said to her colleagues, "and I would ask for a moment of silence Madam President, and respecting condolence for my community."

Credit: Senate TV

According to Rep. Carra's office, additional details will be announced when the legislation is introduced.

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